Suicide Prevention: Mental Health a top priority

Johannesburg- Statistics show that, for most people, the Covid-19 pandemic has led to enormous personal and socio-economic hardship, intensifying feelings of isolation, resulting to an increased depression rate and anxiety, which have been linked with suicidal thoughts and behavior.

Despite efforts to reduce stigma relating to mental illness and suicide, this remains a serious hindrance to help-seeking.

September is a month that’s dedicated to dealing with mental health issues and assuring people that suicide is preventable.

According to Matthew Baker, a counselor and founder of The Depression Project, of the four years that they’ve been in practice, they’ve picked millions of people who are depressed, and they claim that “there is not enough help and information about mental health”.

He also revealed that suicide is the 10th biggest cause of death worldwide. “We lose over 800.000 people per year to suicide, and it mostly stems from people feeling like they are a burden and isolation. Speaking up when suicidal is not attention-seeking, having mental health issues does not make you “weak”,” he added.

A piece of study written by the late Dr Sindy Van Zyl, talking to the person who is suicidal helps.

“While they are talking, make sure you listen to them. Take time to read up about depressed, understand that it is a chemical imbalance and can be fixed with by medication, psychotherapy or being admitted in a mental institution,” she wrote in the study.

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